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Black Cardinal: “Our Failure Is Not the White Man’s Fault”

Black Cardinal: “Our Failure Is Not the White Man’s Fault” "We have occupied the posts of the whites, but we have not used the power to serve the people,” Congo Kinshasa Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo …More
Black Cardinal: “Our Failure Is Not the White Man’s Fault”

"We have occupied the posts of the whites, but we have not used the power to serve the people,” Congo Kinshasa Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo said in a homily on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of independence. He explained that the independence is partly “at the root of our difficulties today.” According to Ambongo, the people dreamed about independence, but they hardly prepared for it. Quote, “When the time came we did not know what would happen the next day.”

We'll take the white man's place”

For the Congolese of that time, dreaming of independence meant dreaming of occupying white people's chairs, and enjoying the benefits reserved for whites, the Cardinal explains. It meant the end of forced labour, but beyond forced labour, independence was seen as the end of all heavy labour. Quote, “When we are independent, we will all become leaders. We'll take the white man's place.”

The White Also Worked”

The Congolese went on occupying the posts of the whites. But Cardinal Ambongo explains that “they understood nothing of what the whites actually did when they occupied their posts.” The new people did not understand the exercise of authority and did not know how to run an office. Rather: Any political or administrative task was seen as an opportunity to enjoy the benefits and privileges of the whites. But the Cardinal pointed out that the white, while they were sitting in their chairs, were not just having a good time. They also worked. Quote, “We, on the other hand, put aside the idea of service to others and put the emphasis on pleasure.”

We Have Shamefully Failed”

Cardinal Ambongo called a spade a spade: “We have never felt indebted to the people.” He accuses a culture of impunity for the powerful. They condemn a little thief but for them, impunity is total. His conclusion, “How can we accept that 60 years after independence the Congolese people continue to be impoverished to the point of being among the most miserable people on earth today? We must recognize, dear brothers and sisters, that after 60 years of independence we have shamefully failed.”
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Not just relative to this post, is anyone else having problems with most/all the videos on GTV? They play (for me) for approx 20 seconds and then stop. I go back to the beginning and they continue to play for another 20 seconds or so, and when they do re-start I miss some of the dialogue. Is it just me??
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